United States

Semiannual IPO and M&A Outlook Webcast

Tuesday January 23, 2018 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM EST
From Global Enterprise Institute

KPMG Venture Capital Practice


Event Overview

With a relatively slow IPO market in 2017, will IPO performance continue or change course in 2018? How did M&A activity fare in 2017 and what is the outlook for M&A in 2018?

Join KPMG’s Venture Capital Practice for its Semiannual IPO and M&A Outlook Webcast where KPMG professionals take a look back at the activity and trends that shaped the IPO and M&A landscape in 2017, and provide insight into what’s in store for IPOs, M&A, and venture investment in 2018. We will also examine venture investment activity in Life Sciences and offer our perspectives on the growth of this booming sector. 

Why attend? You will gain fresh perspectives on:

  • The state of the IPO and M&A market and outlook for 2018
  • U.S. venture activity in 2017 and expectations for the new year
  • A closer look: venture investment activity in Life Sciences
About the Venture Capital Practice
KPMG’s Venture Capital (VC) practice offers coordinated audit, tax and advisory services tailored to help venture-backed companies navigate each stage of development—from idea through exit. We use our knowledge of the VC ecosystem to help entrepreneurial ventures simplify the complex challenges of creating the technologies of tomorrow in highly competitive industries, while also meeting diverse regulatory, compliance, and financial reporting requirements. Our VC clients collaborate with a global network of KPMG professionals who understand the marketplace challenges facing startups and growth companies. Our passion and mindset match the companies we serve: entrepreneurial, hands-on, proactive, visionary, and dedicated.

Brian Hughes

Partner, National Coleader, Venture Capital, KPMG LLP

Conor Moore

Partner, National Coleader, Venture Capital, KPMG LLP

Mihir Jobalia

Managing Director, Technology Group, KPMG Corporate Finance LLC

Janet Lehman

Partner, Life Sciences Leader, Venture Capital, KPMG LLP

Webcast Survey Results

Webcast attendees were surveyed during the live webcast in an effort to gauge market sentiment on the current and future state of the VC industry.

Read on to learn more >>


When compared to 2016, IPO activity in 2017 ticked up slightly. The outlook for IPO activity in the early part of 2018 is expected to remain positive, particularly for companies in the life sciences and biotech markets. Consistent with this belief, an overwhelming majority of industry professionals we surveyed also anticipate the positive trend for IPOs to continue in 2018 with nearly 90% having a positive outlook and more than half of those respondents hopeful for an overall increase in IPO activity.

As a result of the healthy M&A cycle in 2017, the bullish case for M&A as a source of liquidity for venture-backed companies in the U.S. in 2018 is quite strong. Given this theory that M&A activity will increase this year, we asked respondents how valuations might be effected and almost 60% of the professionals we surveyed believe that M&A valuations for VC-backed companies will stay the same as last year.

The newly passed tax reform legislation is expected to have a positive impact on VC investment, and could draw capital back from overseas. This could have a resonating impact on M&A and drive more liquidity. 63% of survey respondents also agree that the new tax reform would have a positive impact on VC investments in 2018. The new tax reform can be quite significant for startups seeking growth opportunities and for VC investors seeking liquidity.

Although concerns around the level of valuations persisted or became even more pronounced in 2017, venture-backed companies still enjoyed one of the most lucrative climates in history, with the late-stage driving an overall increase in median pre-money valuations to a new high for the decade. We asked respondents if they expect this trend to continue and 57% said that they anticipate an increase in valuations for private investment rounds in 2018.

In 2018, VC activity in the U.S. is expected to build off the optimism and momentum that returned to the market during 2017. Moreover, with a substantial backlog of unicorns, investors, and employees seeking much needed liquidity, a positive trend for exit activity may very well be on the horizon. The consensus among the industry professionals we surveyed aligns with this positive outlook.

>>Download the webcast survey results infographic